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History-1900+

BATUN – BALTIC COOPERATION IN EXILE. How Baltic Americans banded together to stir the conscience of the United Nations

BATUN’s 20th anniversary celebration at the UN in New York. Gintė Damušis is in the second row, 7th from the left.

Sirje Okas Ainso. We, Baltic Americans, victims of World War II and its aftermath, were steadfast in our resolve that one day we will be able to return to a free Estonia, Latvia or Lithuania – lands that the Soviet Union so ruthlessly occupied. We wanted to find a way ...

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They came from Vilnius. Digging for Hidden Treasure Finding Lithuanian markers across America

A meeting with local contacts (from l.) Aistė Žemaitienė, Stephen Kwedar, M.D., Susan Eby, Mary Ann Rackauskas, D.D.S., Rick Dunham, Augustinas Žemaitis, Gražina Macius, Sheila Mack, Maureen (Mack) Mueller. Photo by Sandra Baksys

Sandra Baksys. After 25 days and 4,500 miles criss-crossing the Midwest, following upon the heels of a similar expedition on the East Coast last year, Augustinas Žemaitis and Aistė Žemaitienė, both of Vilnius, Lithuania, have visited more Lithuanian-American heritage sites than anyone else in the world. This year’s “Destination Lithuanian ...

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The Hippie Movement in Lithuania – Forerunners

Dress rehearsal for the rock opera “Jesus Christ SuperStar” before its premiere on Christmas Day, 1971, in Vilnius.

by Skaistė Plaušinytė. The largest and most significant youth movement in Lithuania during the Soviet period was that of the hippies. This movement, which started in the West at the beginning of the 1960s (in the U.S., Great Britain and Western Europe), reached the Soviet Union as well. The hippies seemed ...

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The Oklahoma Saga Continues

Lithuanian Oklahomans gathered to establish the Oklahoma Lithuanian Club.

Vilius Žalpys. In the April 2018 issue of Draugas News, Vilius Žalpys conveyed his initial findings of Lithuanian pioneers in Oklahoma. Here he continues to report on the latest developments in this fascinating but little known Lithuanian enclave. The Oklahoma File Revisited This fall I returned to Oklahoma for a ...

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75 Years and Going Strong. The American Legion Lithuanian Post Commemoration in Baltimore

Lithuanian Legion Baltimore Post 154 at the annual Kosciusko Commemoration at West Point in 2010.

Henry L. Gaidis. This year the 100th Anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Lithuania is being celebrated by virtually every Lithuanian enclave throughout the world. The American Legion Lithuanian Post 154, Baltimore, Maryland, on Sunday, September 16, 2018, took the occasion to also commemorate the 100th Anniversary of ...

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The Draugas digital archive

By Jonas Daugirdas. I presume that most of our readers are quite familiar with the Lithuanian – language Catholic newspaper Draugas, founded in 1909 as a weekly publication by a consortium of priests in Wilkes Barre, PA, and moved to Chicago a few years later. The Marian Fathers of the Immaculate ...

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Paulina Mongirdaitė Lithuania’s First Woman Photographer

By Jolanta Klietkutė. Paulina Mongirdaitė was born about 1865 in Raseiniai county, in the province of Kaunas. Her parents, Sofija (née Griškevičiūtė) and Mečislovas Mongirdas, came from a noble bajoras (boyar) family. Perhaps due to poor record-keeping in the upheavals following the 1863 uprising, her exact birth date and place are ...

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Commemorating a Lithuanian Hero at West Point

Lithuanian participants at the West Point Koščiuška commemoration. From left: Soloist Kristina Malinauskaitė, Ambassador Rolandas Kriščiūnas, Robertas Vitas, AAFKWP member Antanas Dambriūnas and Colonel Olesjasz.

Dr. Robertas Vitas. The United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, hosted a two-day conference commemorating the centennial of the ending of the First World I. Nine scholars presented various aspects of the end of hostilities related explicitly to Eastern Europe. Other than myself and a U.S. army ...

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Ashes in the Snow

Actors Bel Powley as Lina Vilkas and Jonah Hauer-King as Andrius Aras in Ashes in the Snow.

Sandra Baksys. The “biggest Lithuanian movie of all time” is set for worldwide release October 12, 2018.  Filmed in accented English and some Russian with subtitles, Ashes in the Snow will tell the world the little-known story of the U.S.S.R.’s deportations of tens of thousands of innocent Lithuanians to their ...

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Searching for the Wreck of the Prezidentas Smetona. An interview with John Nekus

Editor’s note: In June of last year, John Nekus and a team of Lithuanian naval historians, underwater archeologists and sailors in the Lithuanian Navy lead by Dr. Vladas Žulkus of Klaipėda University sailed on what turned out to be the 3rd expedition to look for the wreck of the Prezidentas ...

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